The University of Chicago News Office
Nov. 15, 2002 Press Contact: Sabrina Miller
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Morris receives the John Howard Association’s James Zacharias Award

Norval Morris, Professor Emeritus, former Dean of the Law School and an internationally recognized expert on the criminal justice system and prison reform, is the first recipient of the John Howard Association’s James Zacharias Award.

The John Howard Association, located in Chicago, is one of the oldest prison reform organizations in the United States. The award was created in memory of one of the organization’s past directors. In 1984 Morris was named to the organization’s Board of Directors and he continues to serve on its Advisory Board. He has made significant contributions to the development of the John Howard Association’s policies on incarceration of the mentally ill, sentencing, capital punishment, graduated sanctions and drug treatment in prisons, among other issues.

“Norval has done so much, for so many, in such an enlightened and caring manner,” said James R. Coldren, President of the John Howard Association. “We’re simply honoring him for being himself and we’re very, very fortunate to have had him in our corner all these years.”

Morris has spent most of his 55-year legal career in the cause of prison reform on behalf of the incarcerated and has worked to reform the overly punitive approach to punishment and to injecmanitarian ideals into the prison system. His most recent book, Maconochie’s Gentlemen: The Story of Norfolk Island and the Roots of Modern Prison Reform, is the well received, fictionalized retelling of a retired naval captain’s enlightened and pioneering transformation of a brutal British penal colony into a model prison. He is also the editor of the Oxford History of the Prison and the author of The Brothel Boy and Other Parables of the Law. In 2000, he received both the American Society of Criminology’s Edwin E. Sutherland Award and the National Council of Crime and Delinquency’s Donald Cressey Award.
Last modified at 03:28 PM CST on Monday, December 02, 2002.

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